Pondering tomorrow’s national “Day Without a Gay”

Tomorrow, Dec. 10, is the first Day Without a Gay in the U.S., where "you are encouraged not to call in sick to work. You are encouraged to call in ‘gay’ — and donate your time to service!"

This national day of protest against Prop. 8 and other anti-gay marriage and gay rights initiatives is designed to show Americans just how much LGBT people contribute to the U.S. economy ($700 billion a year, according to a recent study). If you can’t call in gay without fear of losing your job, you can find alternate ways to join the protest. Some organizers are also urging gays and lesbians not to turn on the TV, go online, use their phone, or do anything else that involves buying anything, with the hope that this will

I have mixed feelings about this particular protest.

Although it’s a nice idea in theory, I suspect there are too many people who are closeted or unable to miss a day of work for fear of losing their job (particularly in this economy) for this to really have an impact.

Also, given the volatility in the markets, I’m pretty sure no one will notice if we don’t buy anything tomorrow — any dip in consumer spending will just be chalked up to the massive economic depression we’re in (besides which, it’s impractical for most of us to not use our phones etc. for a day — and frankly, right now I’m all about inconveniencing the straight people who voted against our rights, not us).

Nonetheless, I’m interested to see what happens tomorrow.

We at AfterEllen.com will not be "calling in gay" tomorrow, since we serve the LGBT community (and no one but lesbian/bi women will notice or care if we don’t show up for work tomorrow), but we’re at least doing our part by getting the message out about the planned protest.

Go to DayWithoutAGay.org to learn about other protests planned around the country tomorrow, and other ways to contribute to the fight for gay marriage rights; read more about how this came about in this article; and read this explanation from one of the event organizers.

In the meantime, here’s a funny new video created by the Jennifer Vanasco and John Polly, the editors of our sister sites 365gay.com and NewNowNext.com, which illustrates just how fruitless it is to try and run an office without queer people:

(And yes, before you ask — that is me they’re referring to when they name "Sarah" as one of the people who called in gay. Just for that, I plan to run the site at home in my pajamas tomorrow!)

Anyone planning to "call in gay" to work or school tomorrow? Let us know in the comments.